California State University and
California community college leaders held a conference call Feb. 20 to provide students information on the new Associate Degree for Transfer Program.
In September of 2010, a proposal was established by California community colleges and CSUs to collaborate on a program that strives to make it easier for students to transfer between these two levels of higher education, according to Erik Skinner, the California community college d
eputy chancellor. Now, they are rolling out with the plan.
“It established a more streamlined pathway for transfer students,” Skinner said.
The goal is to make it easier for students to transfer between the higher education systems, according to Skinner.
“The transfer function is fundamental to what the community college provides,” Skinner said.
This new program offers multiple benefits, he said.
It provides guaranteed admission to the CSU system, Skinner said.
Students will know what courses to take for their associate
degrees and the program minimizes the need to take extra lower division and repeat courses which corrects the inefficiencies, according to Skinner.
He said there will be no special classes for this program, but students will follow a “designated pathway,”
which will improve efficiency in degree completion.
“They’re not separate courses, they are courses designated to help this program,”
These designated courses will help to improve efficiency in transferring and graduating, according to Skinner.
“By reducing excess units, we can achieve an additional 40,000 seats for college transfer students at CSU
s,” he said. He said that 22 of the more popular majors have had their transfer programs for CCCs and CSUs planned out already by the academic senate.
This pathway was set up so that students would not have to repeat courses or take courses that are unnecessary for them, according to Skinner.
“The last few years with severe budget cuts, it was difficult for students to get classes,” said Ephraim Smith, CSU executive vice chancellor and chief academic officer.
Smith said this program would help to “stop the hemorrhaging” of students being unable to get the classes they need.
“Our goal is that as the state budget improves we will start seeing increases in enrollment,” Smith said.
He said that over time, he would like to see a higher percentage of students take this program to make college life more efficient for them.
The program should be fully implemented by 2014, according to Smith.
“Our board of governors has established the goal of 80
percent by 2013, and 100 percent by 2014,” Smith said. “We have made this a priority.”
Smith said the proposal made by the community college system will come in March, to try and make things more facilitative for the transfer program.
Last fall the CSU
s welcomed just 120 students through the new pathways program who were enrolled in community colleges, according to Skinner.
“We remain optimistic that the significant progress we’ve seen to date will increase over time,” Skinner said.
Transfers are required to complete 60 transferable units, including the basic four GE areas with a C or better, according to Dennis Jaehne, associate vice president of undergraduate studies for the CSU.
“New 1440 program Associates degrees and transfer (AA/T) degrees require completion of 60 units max for an AA while at a CCC and guarantees 60 unit max major completion at a CSU if the AA/T is identified for the major selected,” Jaehne stated in an email. “The 60 units of CCC coursework will include specific prep classes for the identified major for that AA/T.”
Jaehne stated most of the students will know exactly what to take for their selected major, which will “bump” them for admission.
“(It) should help students complete sooner, with fewer wasted units, saving them money, and freeing up admission slots for other students,” he stated.